Example Of Essay On History Is A Weapon By Howard Zinn

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Slavery, Plantation, Abolitionism, Violence, United States, Crime, Tobacco, Humans

Pages: 2

Words: 550

Published: 2020/12/22

Chapter 9, Slavery without Submission, Emancipation without Freedom

The conflicts and arguments that occurred because of slavery in the United States have taken many forms and had many motivations. Not all abolitionists were humanists that thought that slavery was inherently wrong. Politicians did not have the slaves’ best interests in mind. Slaves often used violence to make change in their plight. Instead the issue of slavery and the continued maltreatment of blacks after the Civil War paints a bleak picture of society’s perception of blacks and their place in American society.
Slavery was deeply entrenched in the South due to its agriculture based economy, slaves were required to tend to the crops. This practice began in Jamestown, Virginia with the cultivation of tobacco (Salomon and Salomon). Slaves were viewed as property, not as humans. Zinn makes a powerful statement, “Are the conditions of the slavery as important as the existence of slavery?” (Zinn ch. 9). This is powerful shift in perceptions. Zinn goes on to describe the whippings and maltreatment of slaves, but the statistics cited from plantation documents cannot fully describe what is was like to live the life of a slave.
Slaves did attempt to organize and revolt throughout the South, but every attempt was met with swift defense and punishment. The largest revolt occurred in New Orleans in 1811. The slaves wounded a plantation owner, killed his son and began moving from plantation to plantation recruiting other slaves. They were quickly stopped by The U.S. Army, punishment was swift and brutal. My perception of the anecdotes and quotes presented by Zinn is that these revolts were reactions to the brutality that slaves had to live with on a daily basis. Did they have a pan for themselves when the revolt was over?
Frederick Douglas’ speech on the Fourth of July, 1852 was clear and to the point. Independence Day had no meaning. When a nation continued to enslave other humans, true independence could not exist. He compared the conditions that existed in the United States in the practice and execution of slavery as, “fraud, deception, impiety, and a hypocrisy- a thin veil to cover up crimes that would disgrace a nation of savages” (Zinn ch. 9).
Abolitionists who sought an end to slavery in the North, did so through rhetoric. Blacks on the other hand sough to end slavery by any means possible, rhetoric, rebellion and political change through elections and law. Southerners engaged in debate or ignored the abolitionists. In 1829, a free black man in Boston penned a pamphlet that advocated the end to slavery. Southern whites were so enraged a bounty was placed on Walker’s head. Violence directed at white abolitionists was not a palpable issue.
Despite the end of slavery after the Civil War, blacks were still subject to violence and mistreatment. Poverty was rampant and inequality the norm. Poverty and the rise of the Ku Klux Klan continued to plague blacks. Blacks continued to fight for their rights as human beings and Americans for the next hundred years. As John Hope said when he addressed black students in Nashville, Tennessee, “If we are not striving for equality, in heaven’s name for what are we living?Now catch your breath, for I am going to use an adjective: I am going to say we demand social equalityI am no wild beast, nor am I am unclean thing” (Zinn ch. 9).

References

Salmon, Emily Jones and John Salmon. "Tobacco in Colonial Virginia." Encyclopedia Virginia.
Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, 29 Jan. 2013. Web. 14 Mar. 2015.
Zinn, Howard. A Peoples’ History of the United States. New York: Harper Perennial Modern
Classics, 2003. Web http://www.historyisaweapon.com/zinnapeopleshistory.html.

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WePapers. (2020, December, 22) Example Of Essay On History Is A Weapon By Howard Zinn. Retrieved September 29, 2022, from https://www.wepapers.com/samples/example-of-essay-on-history-is-a-weapon-by-howard-zinn/
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WePapers. Example Of Essay On History Is A Weapon By Howard Zinn. [Internet]. December 2020. [Accessed September 29, 2022]. Available from: https://www.wepapers.com/samples/example-of-essay-on-history-is-a-weapon-by-howard-zinn/
"Example Of Essay On History Is A Weapon By Howard Zinn." WePapers, Dec 22, 2020. Accessed September 29, 2022. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/example-of-essay-on-history-is-a-weapon-by-howard-zinn/
WePapers. 2020. "Example Of Essay On History Is A Weapon By Howard Zinn." Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com. Retrieved September 29, 2022. (https://www.wepapers.com/samples/example-of-essay-on-history-is-a-weapon-by-howard-zinn/).
"Example Of Essay On History Is A Weapon By Howard Zinn," Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com, 22-Dec-2020. [Online]. Available: https://www.wepapers.com/samples/example-of-essay-on-history-is-a-weapon-by-howard-zinn/. [Accessed: 29-Sep-2022].
Example Of Essay On History Is A Weapon By Howard Zinn. Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/example-of-essay-on-history-is-a-weapon-by-howard-zinn/. Published Dec 22, 2020. Accessed September 29, 2022.
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